Veda Narayana Perumal Temple, Kodikulam – History
In the 14th century AD, it is believed that this temple slid into ruins under the reign of Maravarman Kulasekara Pandyan I and was later renovated by Sundara Pandyan, a Chieftain. Inscriptions at the Thiru Mohur Divya Desam refer to this place as Thungavanam Kshetram on the banks of Brahmma Theertham.
Pillai Lokacharyar attained Salvation here:
There was a saint managing the Srirangam temple named Nampillai praised by the Vaishnava world as Lokacharyar. He had a devout disciple Vallal Vadakku Thiru Veedhi Pillai who was blessed with a male child in 1205 in Aipasi (October-November) on Tiruvonam star day. He named his child as Pillai Lokacharyar in remembrance of his Guru. The child grew in learning and was devoted to the service of the Lord.
During the Muslim Invasion of Srirangam, Muslims targeted the Srirangam Ranganatha Swamy Temple. Pillai Lokacharyar was 118 then. Despite his age, he wanted to save the procession deity Azhagia Manavalan. He covered the sanctum sanctorum of the presiding deity by a wall, installed some idols there and carried the real procession deities in a covered palanquin and moved towards south with his disciples. He came to Kodikulam enduring untold sufferings. He worshipped Lord Vedanarayana, hid Azhagia Manavalar and performed pujas.
The invaders came to this place too. Lokacharyar took the Perumal and reached the top of the hill. When he came down holding the plants and trees for support, he fell down. Even at such a critical time, Lokacharyar held Perumal closely on his chest to avoid any injury to him and fell down with his back to the ground. He was seriously injured. He lived just three days then and attained salvation on Jeshta Suddha Dwadasi in the month of Aani (June-July). Small creatures as flies and ants that had his touch also attained salvation.
His disciples used the garlands and the vastras on Lord for his funeral and buried him there itself. They stayed there for a month and completed the rituals as per rules. They returned to Srirangam after 48 years with the procession deity. Later, a separate shrine was built for Pillai Lokacharyar in Kodikulam. On Tiruvonam star days, being the birth of the saint, special pujas are performed in the shrine.